Some children and adult patients are nervous about their dental appointments. Nitrous oxide sedation (laughing gas, happy gas) is commonly used for our anxious patients. When used appropriately it can be a very safe drug and it has very few side effects. Because of this, it can safely be used in most patients of all ages.
Laughing gas is not meant to fully sedate patients, nor is it meant to act as a pain reliever. It is an easily administered inhaled sedation agent. Patients are awake, alert and responsive to command. The amount given is patient-individualized. Although dosage is individualized, each individual, adult and child, have different responses to nitrous. Nitrous oxide’s effects wear off very quickly after it is discontinued, so adult patients are safe to drive themselves after their appointments.